2mee is aiming to further understand the gaming sector and the challenges that casinos, sportsbooks and affiliates face following its latest round of funding last month.
Raising £500,000 towards the end of March, the direct human messaging service noted that the funding would enable the company to “shift up a gear” with its sales and marketing activity.
Joining CasinoBeats, James Riley, CEO at 2mee, explained what the industry can expect to see from the firm, delving into direct human messaging and how it aids players and operators, socialisation and the metaverse.
CasinoBeats: You mentioned your latest funding round will allow 2mee to ‘shift up a gear’ when it comes to sales and marketing activity. What can we expect to see from your company in this regard?
James Riley, CEO at 2mee.
James Riley: It certainly will. We are now on the hunt for a Marketing Director that understands the gaming sector and the challenges that casinos, sportsbooks and affiliates face when it comes to engaging their audiences and communicating with them.
This will strengthen our senior management team having just appointed Brian Smillie as Commercial Strategy Director. Brian is using his vast experience to help drive awareness of 2mee across a range of sectors, and in particular to make the gaming sector aware of the incredible engagement and conversion stats/rates that our human hologram messages deliver.
CB: Can you explain what your direct human messaging platform is, how it works, and how it benefits players and operators alike?
JR: Our technology is actually really simple but extremely powerful. The platform has been developed to facilitate face-to-face communication between businesses/brands and their target audiences. It allows brands and organisations to capture and transmit people as messages to generate an emotional connection with the end user.
This human touch, and the empathy it creates, is what delivers the unprecedented engagement rates and CTRs for our clients.
The platform itself has been built so that it is stable and incredibly easy to use. Built in partnership with the engineers at IBM, it offers a simple and intuitive user interface masking a very powerful marketing system.
Simply record the person delivering the message from any setting by using the smartphone in their pocket; our algorithms recognise the human form and cut out the surrounding clutter. The end result is a very powerful messaging device that focuses the viewer on the person and the message.
In addition to hologram messages, the platform also sends ‘standard’ text and rich media messaging so there is no need to dual platform. It also integrates seamlessly with CRM systems.
CB: Socialisation within igaming has begun to take centre stage when it comes to player’s experience – much delayed in my view – why do you think the industry is focusing more on social interaction?
JR: We are all intrinsically social and we all want to see and be a part of what is going on around us. We are a tribal species, and we all want to feel part of a tribe. If you look generally at the way online entertainment is heading, it is all about shared social experiences.
The gambling industry is going to have to offer this too, and that is why we have seen the rise of slot streaming and other more interactive casino and sports betting experiences.
Of course, 2mee and its human hologram messaging platform fits perfectly into this move toward greater socialisation. What’s more social than sending a brand ambassador directly to the user’s pocket or desktop?
CB: Can you delve into your Human Hologram Messages?
JR: Our human hologram messages have been designed to meet a wide range of operator and affiliate requirements. Having a person as the interface for a brand has a lot of uses, from pushing bonuses and promotions to guiding players through KYC, acting as a key touchpoint for customer support and even making responsible gambling interventions.
Regardless of the use, the underlying fundamental is the same and that is using real people to deliver messages that impact players on an emotional level.
CB: With the metaverse the buzz conversation at the moment, crypto seeming to be here for the long haul, and a general consensus that online will be ‘the new reality’, just how important is it for a safe and secure messaging platform?
JR: Online is the new reality, but, despite this, we still need to feel connected. Operators must also ensure that players remain safe and protected in these increasingly immersive, sophisticated and comprehensive digital worlds, and human hologram messaging allows them to connect in a real-world way in these new online environments.
Of course, these new technologies present challenges for platforms such as ours, but that is why 2mee’s architecture has been built in conjunction with IBM to ensure our platform is safe, secure and can also keep pace with technological advancements.
CB: Can greater use of instant messaging enhance engagement with possible problem gamblers, mitigating the need for potentially intrusive measures such as affordability checks?
JR: Absolutely. Making interventions with players that are displaying signs of problem play requires sensitivity and empathy. Text messages or live chat pop-ups lack the human touch and can do more damage than good when it comes to providing support to those that need it.
Let me explain by way of example. During the pandemic, the UK government sent out a series of text messages encouraging people to go for their COVID-19 vaccine. The text messages were written in capital letters, which gave the impression of being shouted at. That was not the intention, I’m sure, but it goes to show how text on its own lacks emotion and empathy.
That is not the case with human hologram messaging – it is said that 90 per cent of all communication is non-verbal so while most of this is lost when sending an SMS, email or live chat pop up, it is captured fully in a hologram video.
CB: Is there a risk that the use of direct human messaging could have a negative effect?
JR: There is no risk in my opinion. The world is quickly moving online and with shared experiences in a wide range of digital environments and worlds. Human interaction will be just as important in these online spaces as they are in real life, and 2mee will be a major player by providing face to face communication within these spaces.
In fact, I would argue that our technology provides a real sense of authenticity in a world progressively driven towards AI.
CB: In the US, can this technology benefit operators with regards to KYC by learning more about demand for different products/betting markets in different states?
JR: The 2mee platform has a sophisticated back-end that collates a range of stats and data from each message and presents it to marketeers in real time. They can analyse these stats to determine message and campaign performance, and then tweak if necessary. Even if the campaign is not hitting the mark, it takes just minutes to record another message and distribute it.
This data-led approach will allow marketers to understand what is and is not working with players across all US states, and then deploy fully optimised campaigns that they know will engage their players.